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post #31 of 47 Old 01-04-2012
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We just had two great trip w/Conch charters at a great price for a 46' Cat for 7 days. There were a few issues which Conch quickly resolved. A+
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post #32 of 47 Old 01-05-2012
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I've sailed with Conch in Nov/Dec for the last 4 years and I'll be sailing with them again this year. Pay for 7 days - sail for 10; $1000 cheaper; boats are a little older with a few more scratches; Nice people!
I've had some trips where nothing went wrong, other trips where we had some small equipment failure. Was fixed real quick and didn't mess up our plans too much.
Worst charter I ever had was with Moorings in the Bahamas!
sam :-)

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Just because you're paranoid ...doesn't mean they're not after you!
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post #33 of 47 Old 05-02-2014
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

im thinking about chartering from conk in the BVI next summer. we were going to charter their L47 salivation anybody chartered this leopard before care to share their experience
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post #34 of 47 Old 05-03-2014
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

I had a good experience with Conch, and I have some friends who would charter with none other. btw I also had a good experience with TMM Tortola.
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post #35 of 47 Old 03-13-2015
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

I had a very mixed experience with Conch Charter, more negative than positive. I wouldn't charter from them again. While their boats are older models, and therefore priced competitively for the charter industry, the state of repair of the boats leaves a lot to be desired, and that ended up becoming a HUGE issue with our losing half a day of sailing, and other time performing repairs ourselves on misc little items like replacing circuit breakers, repairing handles on coffee pots, and making due with partially functioning winches and winch handles. The sails were older, and in high winds the jib clue blew out, costing us half a day's sail while they repaired it. To be fair, they hustled to repair the sail (luckily we were close enough to Tortola to motor in, but if we were elsewhere we would have lost even more time), and later they sent me by ferry to Virgin Gorda a new electric winch breaker to replace a nonfunctioning one that continuously tripped creating serious challenges getting the main halyard up - and even the winch handle as a backup did not fit properly as a work around. They get some points for quick repair and response, but on a short week vacation valuable time was lost with ill maintained equipment that should not have needed repair in the first place. When I requested a credit for my half day of lost sailing, a small token request to satisfy a customer who had lost a half day's itinerary, they developed an attitude, the manager suggested that I could have sailed on my main sail if I had wanted to, and refused to even listen to my reason for requesting a small credit. The owner, Peter, staunchly argued why I deserved no credit, blaming me for the clue in the sail blowing out, even though we had one of their captain's aboard who had reefed in the sail and was cautious not to tighten the jib too much on the high wind conditions. While I tried to appeal to them to consider the benefit of a customer walking away partially compensated for lost time on a short vacation due to poorly maintained equipment, they basically said they "agree to disagree" and that their repair service they provided was satisfactory enough for them, and that such down time due to older equipment was my price to be paid for competitively priced charter rates on their "older" boats. They have now lost my repeat business for the next five years, and tossed away $25,000 in revenue by declining a $300 customer service credit, and their attitude in so doing wiped out any earned respect in their 110% effort to repair what was broken. If you value your vacation time, and don't want to deal with repairs or down time, charter elsewhere if you have the funds to pay slightly more for a charter! PS- I learned from others who chartered from Conch Charters that they lost 4 other sails that week due to high winds and the "older" sails not being properly maintained or reinforced. The other family that charted agreed, "You get what you pay for."
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post #36 of 47 Old 03-13-2015
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

Wow, that is pretty bad. As much as we have enjoyed Conch, this is no way to treat a customer. I wonder if they are on a downhill slide? Or if business has really turned up due to the economy in the States, combined with their unique business model, customer retention is just not that big of a deal? (not a good idea)

Which boat did you have btw?


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Originally Posted by OnVacation View Post
I had a very mixed experience with Conch Charter, more negative than positive. I wouldn't charter from them again. While their boats are older models, and therefore priced competitively for the charter industry, the state of repair of the boats leaves a lot to be desired, and that ended up becoming a HUGE issue with our losing half a day of sailing, and other time performing repairs ourselves on misc little items like replacing circuit breakers, repairing handles on coffee pots, and making due with partially functioning winches and winch handles. The sails were older, and in high winds the jib clue blew out, costing us half a day's sail while they repaired it. To be fair, they hustled to repair the sail (luckily we were close enough to Tortola to motor in, but if we were elsewhere we would have lost even more time), and later they sent me by ferry to Virgin Gorda a new electric winch breaker to replace a nonfunctioning one that continuously tripped creating serious challenges getting the main halyard up - and even the winch handle as a backup did not fit properly as a work around. They get some points for quick repair and response, but on a short week vacation valuable time was lost with ill maintained equipment that should not have needed repair in the first place. When I requested a credit for my half day of lost sailing, a small token request to satisfy a customer who had lost a half day's itinerary, they developed an attitude, the manager suggested that I could have sailed on my main sail if I had wanted to, and refused to even listen to my reason for requesting a small credit. The owner, Peter, staunchly argued why I deserved no credit, blaming me for the clue in the sail blowing out, even though we had one of their captain's aboard who had reefed in the sail and was cautious not to tighten the jib too much on the high wind conditions. While I tried to appeal to them to consider the benefit of a customer walking away partially compensated for lost time on a short vacation due to poorly maintained equipment, they basically said they "agree to disagree" and that their repair service they provided was satisfactory enough for them, and that such down time due to older equipment was my price to be paid for competitively priced charter rates on their "older" boats. They have now lost my repeat business for the next five years, and tossed away $25,000 in revenue by declining a $300 customer service credit, and their attitude in so doing wiped out any earned respect in their 110% effort to repair what was broken. If you value your vacation time, and don't want to deal with repairs or down time, charter elsewhere if you have the funds to pay slightly more for a charter! PS- I learned from others who chartered from Conch Charters that they lost 4 other sails that week due to high winds and the "older" sails not being properly maintained or reinforced. The other family that charted agreed, "You get what you pay for."

Last edited by kellysails; 03-13-2015 at 04:24 PM. Reason: grammer clean up, still not great
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post #37 of 47 Old 03-13-2015
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

While I can agree that customer service is not a high priority with Conch, I think you need to reconsider your statement about paying "slightly" more for your charter at another company.

I have chartered with Conch at least five times and this last time, two weeks ago, was the first time without glitches with either the boat or the dinghy. I guess I think they are getting better.

Also, Kelly, believe me, this time of year there is no shortage of business in the BVI. So maybe you are right about their attitude about customer retention.
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post #38 of 47 Old 03-13-2015
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

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I have chartered with Conch at least five times and this last time, two weeks ago, was the first time without glitches with either the boat or the dinghy.
I have also chartered with Conch five times and likely will again. But I never charter any of their boats without bringing my own roll duct tape and a handful of oversized zip ties. One time we had a transmission implode on us right in the middle of negotiating a mooring field. We just hung out an extra day in trellis bay but we still had a good time. Friggin boats, I expect no less. They were johnny on the spot with a new (rebuilt) tranny, and it was actually amazing to witness an install in five hours.

One time we had a main sheet block disintegrate into a puff of smoke. That block was likely a hand me down of some old ancient wreck.

Last edited by kellysails; 03-13-2015 at 05:54 PM. Reason: typo
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post #39 of 47 Old 03-13-2015
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

Oh, how did I forget to mention this one.

We had a Conch boat in which the starter would not kick in if we were on a port tack with any little amount of heel. It took five days to figure out that correlation. Why does the starter kick in sometime and sometimes not? Once we figured out that correlation, I spent some time looking for a loose electrical connection although that took away from beer drinking time so I mostly just ignored it. We just tack away from a port tack if we needed to start the motor

There must be more Conch stories out there, let's hear them!
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post #40 of 47 Old 03-13-2015
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Re: Conch Charters, BVI

I always get suspicious with a negative review member who just joined and a company/product/service review is their very first post. Not saying they are wrong or it didn't happen as described, just suspicious, that's all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OnVacation View Post
I had a very mixed experience with Conch Charter, more negative than positive. I wouldn't charter from them again. While their boats are older models, and therefore priced competitively for the charter industry, the state of repair of the boats leaves a lot to be desired, and that ended up becoming a HUGE issue with our losing half a day of sailing, and other time performing repairs ourselves on misc little items like replacing circuit breakers, repairing handles on coffee pots, and making due with partially functioning winches and winch handles. The sails were older, and in high winds the jib clue blew out, costing us half a day's sail while they repaired it. To be fair, they hustled to repair the sail (luckily we were close enough to Tortola to motor in, but if we were elsewhere we would have lost even more time), and later they sent me by ferry to Virgin Gorda a new electric winch breaker to replace a nonfunctioning one that continuously tripped creating serious challenges getting the main halyard up - and even the winch handle as a backup did not fit properly as a work around. They get some points for quick repair and response, but on a short week vacation valuable time was lost with ill maintained equipment that should not have needed repair in the first place. When I requested a credit for my half day of lost sailing, a small token request to satisfy a customer who had lost a half day's itinerary, they developed an attitude, the manager suggested that I could have sailed on my main sail if I had wanted to, and refused to even listen to my reason for requesting a small credit. The owner, Peter, staunchly argued why I deserved no credit, blaming me for the clue in the sail blowing out, even though we had one of their captain's aboard who had reefed in the sail and was cautious not to tighten the jib too much on the high wind conditions. While I tried to appeal to them to consider the benefit of a customer walking away partially compensated for lost time on a short vacation due to poorly maintained equipment, they basically said they "agree to disagree" and that their repair service they provided was satisfactory enough for them, and that such down time due to older equipment was my price to be paid for competitively priced charter rates on their "older" boats. They have now lost my repeat business for the next five years, and tossed away $25,000 in revenue by declining a $300 customer service credit, and their attitude in so doing wiped out any earned respect in their 110% effort to repair what was broken. If you value your vacation time, and don't want to deal with repairs or down time, charter elsewhere if you have the funds to pay slightly more for a charter! PS- I learned from others who chartered from Conch Charters that they lost 4 other sails that week due to high winds and the "older" sails not being properly maintained or reinforced. The other family that charted agreed, "You get what you pay for."
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